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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 September 2018

Police shoot man after prank call following 'dispute between gamers'

Man arrested for allegedly making call that sent an armed police team to the home of Andrew Finch in Kansas

The mother of the dead man accused police of murdering her son, based on a false report. (Bo Rader /The Wichita Eagle via AP)
The mother of the dead man accused police of murdering her son, based on a false report. (Bo Rader /The Wichita Eagle via AP)

Police in Los Angeles have arrested a man they suspect made a hoax emergency call that resulted in a police officer fatally shooting a man at the door of his own home, police said.

A prankster called the emergency number with a fake story about a shooting and kidnapping to draw a SWAT (special weapons and tactics) team to the victim's address, said Troy Livingston of Wichita police.

The call was in response to an online argument over a small wager on a popular computer shooting game, Call of Duty, according to a gamers news site.

Authorities haven't released the name of the man who was killed Thursday, but relatives have identified him as 28-year-old Andrew Finch.

Tyler Barriss, 25, is suspected of making the call and was arrested in Los Angeles on Friday, said police.

In audio of the emergency call played by police Friday, a man said he shot his father in the head and that he was holding his mother and a sibling at gunpoint. The caller, speaking with relative calm, also said he poured gasoline inside the home "and I might just set it on fire."

Officers subsequently surrounded the home at the address the caller provided and prepared for a hostage situation.

When Mr Finch went to the door, a policeman shot him as he moved a hand towards his waistband, said police. Finch, who was unarmed, died a few minutes later at a hospital. The officer is on paid leave.

His mother, Lisa Finch, told reporters "that cop murdered my son over a false report in the first place."

The FBI estimates that roughly 400 cases of swatting occur annually. In other cases of apparent swatting, three families in Florida in January had to evacuate their homes after a detective received an anonymous email claiming bombs had been placed at the address.

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